Stewart Friesen poses with the Battle of the Bullring trophy. (STSS Photo)

Friesen Tops Accord ‘Battle of the Bullring’ 

ACCORD, N.Y. — Stewart Friesen emerged victorious in a rain-shortened ‘Battle of the Bullring’ at Accord Speedway with the Bob Hilbert Sportswear Short Track Super Series Fueled by Sunoco on Tuesday night. 

The win rewarded Friesen with a $9,090.90-plus payday, as the event honored longtime Accord Speedway favorite Barry Davis, who was on hand for the event paying homage to his legendary Accord career and No. 9D.

A restart at the scheduled halfway point – lap 25 – allowed Friesen to power around Accord’s all-time winningest driver, Rich Ricci Jr., to claim his 45th career STSS victory.

The 33-lap affair served as the opening round of the River Valley Builders North Region and Round No. 4 of the Ollie’s Overall Championship.


“Battling with a Ricci at Accord,” Friesen said with a smile. “What could be more fitting… Rich ran a really good race and was really hitting the bottom well.

“I’m really honored to win the first Barry Davis tribute race,” he added.

Friesen rolled off from the fifth starting position following the Beyea Custom Headers Redraw, while Ajay Potrzebowski II and Matt Sheppard occupied the front row.

Potrzebowski grabbed the lead in the early going. Sheppard faded to the back half of the top 10 on an early restart, which slid Sheffield, Mass., native Andy Bachetti into the runner-up spot.

Another restart on lap seven led to the ultimate end to Potrzebowski’s run at his first career STSS win.

Potrzebowski got loose on the outside of turns three and four and spun, fortunately avoiding contact with the rest of the field as they went by. The team later reported power steering issues.

Bachetti inherited the lead, followed by Danny Creeden, Friesen, Ricci Jr. and Mat Williamson.

Bachetti’s lead was short-lived however, as he slowed to bring out the caution a lap later.

The completed lap moved Rich Ricci Jr. to the top spot with Friesen alongside as Creeden fell to third.

From there, the battle lit up between the top two, while the rest of the field battled in their own fight for third.

While Friesen chased Ricci Jr., Alex Yankowski began to make his presence known, moving into the top five after starting from the 15th position.

Yankowski then moved by Creeden for fourth just prior to the race’s next yellow flag on lap 14.

The lead duo continued to be the class of the field, with Friesen continuing to pressure Ricci Jr., but yellow flags kept the leaders from getting into any lap traffic.

On the key lap-25 restart, Friesen used the outside groove to beat Ricci Jr. to the line and muscled the lead away for good.

Another yellow flag flew on lap 33, which would ultimately bring out the checkered flag. A light mist began to intensify, causing the rest of the night to be nixed, and Friesen was officially declared the winner.

Friesen was also a rain-shortened winner at Outlaw Speedway in Dundee, N.Y., back in 2019, which coincidentally ended on lap 33 as well.

Ricci Jr. settled for second, one spot shy of his first career STSS triumph.

“I didn’t need all those yellows,” Ricci Jr. proclaimed. “After that Dash for Cash though I knew we had a really good car and I really felt like we were going to get the win.”

Ricci Jr., who took two years off from driving, was behind the wheel of his daughter Allison’s car.

Williamson rounded out the podium, extending his lead in the Ollie’s Overall Championship in his Behrent’s Performance Warehouse No. 3.

“I really like coming to this place,” Williamson stated. “It takes a good driver and a good car and not just a big motor.”

Yankowski climbed to fourth in the Tim Millman-backed No. 84y and Sheppard rounded out the top five in his No. 9D, who honored Barry Davis with a slight number change.

Feature Finish (50 Laps)

1. 44-STEWART FRIESEN[5]; 2. 55-Rich Ricci Jr[11]; 3. 3W-Mat Williamson[9]; 4. 84Y-Alex Yankowski[15]; 5. 9S-Matt Sheppard[2]; 6. 35M-Mike Mahaney[8]; 7. 9D-Danny Tyler[13]; 8. 5-Tyler Johnston[6]; 9. 7MM-Michael Maresca[19]; 10. 9J-Marc Johnson[25]; 11. 28-Michael Storms[21]; 12. 02-Jack Lehner[18]; 13. 97-Bobby Hackel IV[10]; 14. 60-Hunter Lapp[27]; 15. 69-Randy Green[14]; 16. 17-Jimmy Wells[16]; 17. 6H-JR Hurlburt[26]; 18. 20F-Scott Ferrier[23]; 19. 16X-Danny Creeden[4]; 20. 6D-Dillon Steuer[12]; 21. 15M-Daniel Morgiewicz Jr[17]; 22. 93M-Craig Mitchell[24]; 23. 82S-Will Shields[22]; 24. 72-Ajay Potrzebowski II[1]; 25. 4B-Andy Bachetti[3]; 26. 3J-Joe Judge[20]; 27. 69B-Tyler Boniface[7]